Super League: Warrington Wolves 20-18 Catalans Dragons
|Warrington (10) 20|
|Tries: Atkins, Penny, Dwyer Goals: Gidley 4|
|Catalans (16) 18|
|Tries: Bousquet, Yaha Goals: Richards 5|
Kurt Gidley's late penalty goal edged Warrington to victory over fellow high-flyers Catalans Dragons to keep up the pressure at Super League's summit.
The kick capped a second-half comeback by the Wolves, who trailed 16-10 at the break, and lifts them two points behind joint-leaders Hull FC and Wigan.
Three tries - from Ryan Atkins, Kevin Penny and Brad Dwyer - were added to by Gidley's four successful kicks.
Julian Bousquet and Fouad Yaha crossed for Catalans, who drop to fourth.
Catalans might have sneaked it, having streaked the length of the field on the counter-attack, only for the try to be disallowed because hooker Eloi Pelissier had caught Wolves playmaker Gidley high as he put a kick up in the Dragons end.
With England coach Wayne Bennett in attendance on his whistle-stop tour of the United Kingdom while his club side Brisbane Broncos have a National Rugby League bye week, there was an opportunity for players such as Ben Currie, Joe Westerman and Daryl Clark to impress.
Having seen just 19 points in the two previous games he had watched, Bennett will have found this a step-up in quality, as third faced fourth in a ferociously contested game.
That said, it was two Australians in Chris Sandow and Gidley who had the quality to unlock Catalans, providing the killer passes for Atkins' and Penny's tries, while Dwyer's effort was down to his own sniping.
Pelissier had earlier teed up Bousquet with a short ball on a beautiful line, while teenage half-back Lucas Albert showed his class to pop a kick in behind for Yaha's score.
Not even Pat Richards' place kicking was enough though, as three tries to two and Gidley's cool penalty eventually separated the two title hopefuls.
Warrington: Ratchford; Russell, R. Evans, Atkins, Penny; Gidley, Sandow; Hill, Clark, Sims, Currie, Hughes, Westerman.
Replacements: Dwyer, Westwood, Bailey, Cox.
Catalans Dragons: Escare; Broughton, Gigot, Richards, Yaha; Carney, Albert, Baitieri, Stewart, Casty, Maria, Pelissier, Bousquet.
Replacements: Bosc, Margalet, Navarrete, Dezaria.
Referee: Chris Campbell (RFL)